WHAT NEEDS HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED:
Kenya's Samburu County has a high incidence of child marriage. 50% of girls are married as children, mostly to older males. 62% become teen mothers.
Child marriage is devastating to young girls in terms of lost education and goals, health risks incurred giving birth at young ages, and in terms of maternal mortality.
The region is a pastoralist, traditional society, but very much affected by current issues of climate change, conflict and the decreased availability of land. Deepening poverty results in more families marrying off their daughters at young ages. Samburu County's young females are described as "Kenya's most excluded girls".
Sambura County is a pastoralist, traditional society, barely changed in 3000 years, but very much affected by current issues of climate change, conflict and decreased availability of land. Conditions have been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. Deepening poverty results in more families marrying off their daughters at young ages. Kenya's president and Sambura County elders, in the 2020 Kisima Declaration, called for an end to child marriage and FGM, yet these practices continue.
HOW WILL THE PROJECT MEET THESE NEEDS?
Too Young to Wed (TYTW) has worked in Kenya since 2015 and has provided scholarships to 60 Samburu girls to attend school. Keeping girls in school is the most protective factor against child marriage. Our project continues with this effort and seeks to expand it. Aside from scholarships, we will foster family/community dialogue in the effort to encourage parents to remain in school and not enter into marriage.
WHAT WILL PROJECT FUNDS BE USED FOR?
Funds will be used to implement the program in one ward of Samburu County. TYTW has reviewed the potential of other wards within the county to which it would like to eventually move, following a spider-scale format, once it has initial results and resources permitting.